When planning out your marketing budget for the year, don’t forget about your company vehicles. They are out on the roads, around town, and in your customer’s parking lot/driveway. Your cars, vans, and trucks can generate leads for your company and have the potential to be one of your best forms of advertising. According to DAXAM, Inc., a moving advertisement generates between 100-200 visual impressions per mile. How many miles are put on your company vehicles a day? A week? A month? A year? What would a few extra inquiries a month do to your bottom line?
Just like with any other form of marketing, it is important to break through the clutter and get noticed. Here are a few tips on how to generate exposure for your business through your company’s car:
- It starts with the type of car you choose for your fleet. If you can, choose a vehicle that stands out on its own for its unique shape. Some examples are the Volkswagen Beetle, Ford Transit, & Mercedes-Benz Sprinter.
- Vehicle wraps are a great way to advertise on your vehicles. Think back to the last time you were driving around town. Chances are if you drove past a vehicle that was wrapped; you gave it a second glance and can probably remember either the company or service with which it was associated. According to a study from the American Trucking Association, 91% of people notice words and pictures when they are displayed on a truck. Imagine the impact a full color, high resolution vehicle wrap could have on your business. Click here to check out some vehicle wrap examples.
- If investing in a vehicle wrap is outside your budget, vehicle magnets are a great alternative. If nothing else, it is important to have your logo and contact information on your company vehicles. Do your employees use their personal vehicles while they are on the clock? Give them a magnet to put on their vehicle while they are on business. Vehicle magnets are also great for seasonal ads.
- Vanity plates can also be used to generate interest amongst fellow drivers. According to Entrepreneur Magazine article, “Driving Awareness with Vehicle Advertising,” the plates that seem to be the most effective are the ones that are clever and need a few moments to decode.Post by: Brian Ottosen
Tired of your co-workers falling asleep during your meetings? Looking for a better way to keep your audience engaged during a presentation. Wanting a better way to impress potential clients? Is PowerPoint just not cutting it anymore? Do you want more flexibility with your presentations? Well if you answered yes to any of those questions, it is about time you were introduced to Prezi. Lucky for you, I am more than happy to make the introduction.
What is Prezi?
Prezi is a cloud-based presentation software that opens up a new world between whiteboards and slides. To fully understand the power of Prezi, you must see a Prezi presentation for yourself. Enjoy the below Prezi presentation on the great jazz bassists and their influence through the ages or click here to explore a variety of Prezi presentations that will rock your world.
Features of Prezi:
- Zoomable user interface (ZUI): pan & zoom around the Prezi canvas to visualize your ideas
- Import PowerPoint slides, images, videos, and more to take your Prezi to the next level
- Work together in real-time to build your presentation from across the room or across time zones
- Present your Prezi both online and offline
- Add a story line to your presentation. Use frames and paths to create a cinematic journey for your audience
- iPad app for the on-the-go-presenter
Take Your Presentations To The Next Level
Now that you have been introduced to Prezi, I know you can’t wait to take your presentation to the next level. Just follow these simple steps:
- Signup for Prezi, it is FREE!
- Watch a few quick videos to learn the ins and outs of Prezi
- Create your first Prezi
- Become a Prezi Master
Post by: Brian Ottosen
As an entrepreneur, beer lover, and avid supporter of Chicago businesses, it’s easy to see why I was excited to hear from John Hall, Founder & President of Goose Island Beer Co., when he received his Lifetime Leadership Award from the Chicago Family Business Council on May 8th. In his address and acceptance speech, he made it clear and concise why his Chicago brewery outlasted all of their competitors. He stated, “Goose Island marketing goes towards educating the consumers. That, paired with the Anheuser-Busch distribution deal, is why we will grow 60% this year.” Thankfully, Mr. Hall and Goose Island have remained in control of their marketing strategy, otherwise, as one blogger jokes, they may have had a logo like this:
I love Super Bowl beer ads as much as the next person and eagerly watch each year so I have something to talk about at the water cooler. However, those beer ads all have one thing in common: they don’t educate the consumer in any way, shape, or form. They just give us something to talk about for a few days until the hoopla of “being in the know” dies down.
For example, I enjoyed the Bud Light “Rescue Dog” commercial that showcased a cute pooch who fetched a Bud Light each time someone said “Here We Go” (WeeGo the dog’s namesake).
But it didn’t teach me anything about Bud Light or how it’s made, and it certainly doesn’t make me want to drink it any more than I did before. The only thing it leaves me wanting is a better trained dog.
On the opposite end of this is craft brewers like Goose Island who choose to invest their money wisely. They invest in getting more hops in your beer, and by educating consumers and fans about their beer instead of creating outrageously expensive Super Bowl advertisements.
While Goose Island’s videos weren’t aired to an audience of 111.3 million, they were viewed by consumers and those that distribute/pour the beer. As a marketing professional, this makes sense to me. Who would you rather have as a bartender, one that has a detailed reason of why you should try a beer and who understands the process of how the beer was made or one that says “our specials are…”
Watch this video example of Goose Island’s Head Cellarman explaining what makes Summertime beer so refreshing. Hopefully, like me, you are left feeling more educated and wanting to learn more about the other beers Goose Island brews. If you are interested, don’t fear: you can watch more videos here or get a first hand education with a Goose Island brewery tour.
As if brewing good beer and educating their customers wasn’t enough, Goose Island offers an MBA card designed to reward patrons as they sample a variety of different beers. Each beer sampled earns a number of credits. After 45 credits, you earn your “Goose Island MBA” and can call yourself a true “Master of Beer Appreciation.”
Cheers to John Hall & Goose Island for creating a nationally-known Chicago company, getting your marketing rights, rewarding your customers, and, most of all, for creating my favorite beer, Summertime!
Post written by: Jamie Pritscher
Typography is a central component of design. It gives us a personality. It’s one of the primary ways we, as a society, pass on information to others. Imagine a website, a magazine or billboard without text. As a graphic designer, typography is becoming my new passion and also a consuming obsession. From a simplistic point-of-view, typography is the arrangement of type. But there is so much more to it than that.
When designing, I always sought after that perfect photo or perfect arrangement of colors. The typography or text in my design was never that important to me. That is until I realized how my choice of typography was deeply rooted in my overall design theme, tone, and message. It works within my layout and color choice to create a well-rounded design.
There are a variety of technical aspects to what creates dynamic and well-designed typography. It is an art form as much as it is a science. There are thousands of great examples out there as well as lists and lists of important rules. A great place to learn more about typography is a blog dedicated to beautiful type: www.ilovetypography.com.
The 3 most important rules of typography:
- Be Aware of Font Communication: every font communicates certain attributes on both a conscious and sub-conscious level. Two of the major areas of communication are gender and era. Consider the examples below:
- Alignment: at some point in life we learn that if something is centered then it is balanced and therefore better. In reality, center alignment is the weakest, hardest to read alignment and should be used very selectively.
- Size Matters: headlines should grab the reader instantly. You’ve got a second or two at best to get someone’s attention in the print world. If you miss that opportunity, you’ve lost your potential customer. This means that when you’re creating a headline, don’t simply type it out: design it. Consider the following two examples:
We are living in a digital age. You can reach out to someone through email, social media, text messaging, apps, instant messaging and even gaming (I’m sure I even missed a few).
That being said, who doesn’t like to open up their mailbox and find something other than bills?
According to the U.S. Post Office, more than 64% of consumers value the mail that they receive in their mailboxes.
This may be hard to believe, but 65% of adult Millennials claim they prefer to read something on paper. Even young people from the “digital generation” value their mail.
According to a survey conducted by ExactTarget, 76% of the “digital generation” said, that they have made purchases based on something that they have received in the mail.
Moral of the story
People like to get mail. The trick is breaking through the clutter of the ads, bills, letters, catalogs and magazines that fill up people’s mailboxes on a daily basis.
Get the Picture
I recently received an ad from BMW that managed to break through the clutter and grab my attention. The piece was advertising the BMW 7 Series. Its goal was for me to contact the local BMW dealer to arrange an opportunity to have a BMW 7 Series for the weekend.
It wasn’t the offer that grabbed my attention; it was the design of the direct mail piece itself. It was the size of a standard envelope but was printed on thick poster board which made it heavier than most mail. The design was clean, simple, and easy to read. What made me take time to look at the piece, was that it was heavier, thicker and different from the rest of the pile of mail.
Because it was different, I showed it to people and am now telling you about it. That is exactly what you want people to do with your marketing materials.
They key with direct mail is develop a piece that will stand out from the rest of the day to day mail. To do this you must be creative and think outside the box. Make the piece a unique shape, print it on a different material, make it interactive, use color and typography to gain attention. The sky’s the limit. Stand out, get noticed, and get people talking about you. Don’t be another ad that gets tossed into the garbage pile.
Post By: Brian Ottosen
Life’s not fair…
If I had a dime for each time I’ve heard that phrase, I would be able to buy a lifetime supply of Monster and still have some money left over for Zingers.
Cliché or not, it is the truth. People are going to make judgments about you or your company based on your experience, appearance, website, personnel…even your company name.
Instead of chalking up lost sales and unconverted clients to the cliché title of this blog post, do something about it. Figure out what element of your company people are seeing in a negative light and turn it into a positive.
For example, just the other day we quoted a major market research project for a very large company. We knew we were up against two other firms who undoubtedly had more extensive portfolios than we did. So how were we going to show that our company’s youth and lack of experience is far outweighed by everything else we bring to the table?
Together, we spent the better part of a day brainstorming ways to overcome the obstacle. Thankfully we have incredibly intelligent and creative team members here, and we found a way to put together a proposal that is unlike any other. We bypassed the ‘traditional’ proposal and produced something that demonstrates our ability to think outside-the-box at a very high level.
Now, whether or not we win the job, each one of us is able to look at our supposed “disadvantages” differently. We’ve started to capitalize on our youth and creativity as opposed to dwelling on whatever experience our young company might lack. After all, when life gives you lemons, you say, “Hey, thanks for the free lemons!” because you know what? Other companies lack what we have in abundance, and that is where their disadvantages lie.
Post By: Erin Walter
This place always fascinates me—this country, South Korea, is comparable to the size of the state of Indiana, spans a variety of topographic features, including mountains, rivers, valleys, farmlands, and beaches. With almost 48.9 million current residents, there isn’t a whole lot of space to house that many people…so they build up over here, creating high rise apartment complexes and living in pretty close quarters. One thing that always makes me smile here is that people take the time to create beauty…even in the heart of a hugely packed city.
This photo was taken on a street corner in Nam-gu, Daegu, South Korea. There is an elementary school on one corner, high rise apartment complexes on two corners, and a high school and complex of shops on the last corner. Even with all of those buildings, the foot and car traffic still has the chance to see something gorgeous every single day.
Post By: Emily Copeland